Mar 7, 2024 - Economy

Scoop: Senate stablecoin bill in the works from Sens. Lummis and Gillibrand

Senator Cynthia Lummis looks to her left at Senator Kirsten Gillibrand on stage at the DC Blockchain Summit in 2022.

Senator Cynthia Lummis, Wyoming, and Senator Kirsten Gillibrand, New York, at the DC Blockchain Summit in 2022. Photo: Valerie Pleasch/Getty Images

U.S. senators Cynthia Lummis (R-Wyo.) and Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.) are actively considering the language for a bill that would cover stablecoins, Axios has learned.

Why it matters: Stablecoins, cryptocurrencies designed to maintain a consistent price, usually pegged to the dollar, are a $140 billion market, but often cited as risks to U.S. anti-money laundering an counter-terrorism rules.

  • Law that would govern stablecoins has been considered the most likely piece of legislation to pass the U.S. Congress for some time.

Between the lines: "Senators Lummis and Gillibrand have been working for several months on a bill that provides regulatory clarity around stablecoins while protecting consumers from bad actors," spokespeople for both senators' offices said in a statement to Axios.

  • "They have been encouraged by the feedback they have received from several stakeholders and are hopeful to have an announcement soon."

Inside the room: A source familiar with the matter tells Axios that staff at the New York Department of Financial Services, the Federal Reserve, Treasury and the National Economic Council have provided technical assistance on the Senate version.

  • The senators' offices are said to be in conversation with the leadership of the House Financial Services Committee.

Flashback: Last July, that committee reported out the Clarity for Payment Stablecoins Act of 2023, sponsored by Rep. Patrick McHenry (R-N.C.), the committee's chair.

  • That legislation attempts to strike a balance between Federal authority and that of the states.

For Lummis and Gillibrand, this would not be the first foray into drafting legislation around cryptocurrency.

What's next: The bill will need to be introduced and referred to a Senate committee.

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